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Ryan Bourne
27 January 2015
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If ‘tax avoidance’ is the answer, what is the question? For many years it might have been: ‘what subject excites only a small number of tax lawyers and HMRC officials?’ But in...
David B. Smith
21 January 2015
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This article is based on David B. Smith’s Politeia paper ‘The UK Government Spending Ratio: Back to the 1930s?’.   Some politicians have asserted that Britain’s...
Ryan Bourne
6 January 2015
2 comments

Friday 19 December 2014 was a happy day for many Londoners, marking their last in the office before Christmas. Yet amid all the festivities, you’d have been forgiven for missing something...
Ryan Bourne
29 December 2014
9 comments

The fallout from the Autumn Statement has mainly revolved around one Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) graph and the words of an excitable BBC journalist. The now infamous ‘Chart 1.1...
Philip Booth
9 December 2014
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Britain has just celebrated ‘Small Business Saturday’. Perhaps yesterday should have been declared ‘Multinational Monday’. Multinationals are often the engine of poverty...
Kristian Niemietz
4 December 2014
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When Chancellor George Osborne spoke about 'aggressive tax planning' in his Autumn Statement speech, I couldn't help the image of 'Irwin R. Shyster' from creeping up in my mind....
Philip Booth
3 December 2014
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It is often suggested that the House of Commons is rather like a football ground and, if I had been there today, I would have thought about starting the above chant, common at football matches, at 12...
Ryan Bourne
2 December 2014
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One hundred and fifty five. That’s the really significant number for those following tomorrow’s Autumn Statement. It’s nothing to do with how much the UK government is borrowing. In...
Philip Booth
28 November 2014
3 comments

Alvin Rabushka is often described as the father of the flat tax. His work inspired the adoption of flat-tax systems in many of the former communist countries of central and eastern Europe. This...
Philip Booth and Ryan Bourne
25 November 2014
2 comments

Fall-out from the Autumn Statement next week is likely to focus heavily on the slowdown in deficit reduction. Borrowing has been £3.7 billion higher this year so far compared with last, and it...
Ryan Bourne
24 November 2014
2 comments

Recent public finance statistics have suggested that the UK deficit has risen in the first seven months of the financial year 2014/15. The build up to the Autumn Statement has therefore seen much...
Ryan Bourne
18 November 2014
7 comments

‘The rich keep getting richer’. If you’ve been watching Channel 4 over recent weeks, you will likely have been subjected to unsubstantiated claims such as this. Viewers of last week...
Philip Booth
12 November 2014
6 comments

It has long been one of my personal gripes that the UK spends a large amount of money on energy market interventions to reduce carbon emissions whilst simultaneously providing domestic consumers with...
Ryan Bourne
11 November 2014
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Important voices are softening up the public for significant tax rises after next year’s election. Last week, the Institute for Fiscal Studies’s Paul Johnson wrote an article ...
Philip Booth
5 November 2014
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A great deal of IEA work corroborates studies produced by the government in suggesting that we have a huge implicit government debt. We can do the fancy maths to try to quantify this government debt...
Ryan Bourne
29 October 2014
2 comments

Last week’s public-finance statistics were truly dreadful. They showed that despite a year of fairly robust economic growth, UK government borrowing since the start of the financial year 2014...
Glynn Brailsford
27 October 2014
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Government borrowing is currently running 10 per cent higher than last year – exemplifying the already parlous state of the UK’s public finances. However, the long-term implications of...
Glynn Brailsford
20 October 2014
1 comment

The Honourable Joe Hockey, Treasurer of the Commonwealth of Australia, sat down with ieaTV to discuss how the Australian government has managed to address the long-term fiscal challenges presented by...
Ryan Bourne
15 October 2014
1 comment

Yesterday’s inflation figures – with CPI inflation down to 1.2 per cent - are, on the face of it, good news, but not necessarily for the government finances. As Sam Bowman of the ASI has...
Philip Booth and Ryan Bourne
9 October 2014
2 comments

The Liberal Democrats have proposed raising the top rate of capital gains tax (CGT) to 35 per cent in order to reduce taxes on the least well off. Go to the back of the class! CGT is a bad tax...